Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Full of Grace

A few snapshots around my yard today.
(Sorry for the blurriness.  I suck at phone photography)

I do not believe in the God I learned about in Sunday School
but its hard not to believe in something very magical in the universe come spring time.

If this is happening in one small yard in zone 5, imagine what is happening all over the world!

And then there is this peach tree I just planted.
I had no idea peaches would grow in the northern climate  (thanks KJ)
Now I go out and rub their little baby fuzziness everyday.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Full of Grace - Graduation

This weekend my youngest daughter graduated college.  Unlike my oldest who breezed through her academics, Peachie always struggled.  She needed speech help, math help, reading help and has always been a terrible test taker.   On top of that she was pudgy and wore braces for 5 years.  And she always had to live in the shadow of her big sister who was smart, cute, athletic and popular.  She and I had a special “little sister” bond as I also had a very popular, pretty big sister of whom I was always jealous.

But somewhere in high school things started to turn around for Peachie.  The braces came off and like a butterfly she thinned out and turned out to be top model beautiful.  (When she tries.  I am too used to seeing her in raggy sweats, messy bun  and no makeup to really believe the FaceBook selfies)  And while her big sister walked away from competitive sports, Peachie excelled at her sport, which got her into a very good school, she became an NCAA athlete, worked triple hard for good grades, found her passion in cardiac rehab and scored huge points for little sisters everywhere.

And so it was with tremendous pride that I watched her graduate on Sunday and have gratitude for:

  • That the bills are finally over!  Besides tuition, no more texts of  water bill,$62.  cable bill $52.  heat (in winter) $520. Rent, groceries, books. It just never ended.  Until now : )

  • Spending the weekend, all together, in this beautiful college town - boat cruises, wineries, a gorgeous hike, farmer’s market, food, ice cream and more food.

  • That Tony Kushner (playwright, Angels in America) was given an honorary degree at the commencement and gave an amazing speech.  I am trying to find the transcript but here is part of a news write-up:

After running off a litany of the world's current ills, from homophobia, economic inequality and the conflicts in the Middle East, and genocide to nuclear proliferation and refugee crises, he urged the graduates to use what they have learned to change the order of the world.

"Parents, teachers, everything worked well enough to deliver you to our ailing and periled world's doorstep. Now step over, enter and fix everything. That's the real reason your parents and teachers and you worked so hard for your degrees. The world needs saving and you smart, educated collegians, you are the ones the world's been waiting for. And time is running out. It really is actually running out."

  • That Peachie and her housemates planned a huge barbecue at their house after the ceremony which gave us the chance to say goodbye to all the parents we have been bleacher sitting with for the past 4 years.  

  • But my absolute favorite moment of the ceremony was the graduation of the service dogs.

PS - While Peachie went through a beautiful and confident metamorphosis, I never really did. Today I am still painfully jealous of my big sister.   But I’ve learned to live with it.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Full of Grace

I live in an area with a dutch heritage and our public parks now look like this.

Peachie, who graduates this week, landed a job in the cardiac unit of my favorite hospital.  A real job. In her field.  Yay!

We went to the lake house on Saturday expecting to find lots of problems from the extreme winter weather but was pleasantly surprised to find minimal damage.  

Beaner very generously took us here for Mother’s Day brunch.  Yes,  I often suffer an embarrassment of riches.

Friday, May 8, 2015

Pathways in the Mind

I always try to keep up on events without allowing bad news to saturate my life.  I am very susceptible to bad news overload.  But lately the state of the world has really gotten to me.  ISIS, hunger, racism, riots, rape, cancer.  Lots and lots of cancer.   I know this is all part of the world as it is, but I also know a different world of nature and beauty and serenity.

And so, knowing that I needed to balance what is feeding my soul lately, I ventured off into the wilderness for a few days.  Not backpacking.  Yet.  I’m pretty sure I would collapse under the weight of a pack right now, especially in the high temperatures we have been experiencing.

No, just a few days of solitary hikes in to the woods and gorges and places untouched by man made upheaval.

Cool and refreshing.

I am home again, reading distressing headlines and trying to support those who are dealing with way too much crap.  

War, violence, sickness.  Nature, beauty, serenity.

It is all the same world.  I must be careful how I choose to react to it.